Charlotte Future 2040
Place Types: Parks and Preserves
Goal: Protect land that is intended to remain as parks or natural preserves in perpetuity. These places contribute to the quality of life of residents and visitors by providing places to gather and recreate, and further the environmental quality of our ecosystems including the tree canopy, waterways, and wildlife habitats.
Parks & Preserves serve to protect public parks and open space while providing rest, recreation, and gathering places for Charlotteans.
- Primary uses may include larger public parks, cemeteries, wildlife refuges, nature preserves, and recreational centers and facilities. Limited commercial uses may be compatible in some Parks and Preserves.
- This Place Type is characterized by natural areas, green spaces with tree canopy, and active uses where appropriate. Structures are typically limited in number and are intended to support on-site recreational activities
and/or civic uses.
- Active uses and structures are located so as to provide minimal impact to sensitive environmental features.
- Parks and Preserves are easily and directly accessible from all places and are located along all street types. Any streets leading to, by, or through these places are designed to encourage safe and comfortable access by all transportation modes.
- The internal transportation network typically consists of pedestrian and bicycle paths for smaller parks, and for larger Parks and Preserves also includes driveways and very low-speed Local streets to provide access to internal facilities. Both the streets and the off-street network are well-connected and include pedestrian and bicycle facilities, even where natural features and large recreational areas limit street connections.
- Typical buildings in this Place Type include recreation facilities, nature centers, restroom facilities, shelters, maintenance buildings, and accessory commercial structures such as concession stands. Building sizes vary depending on the purpose of the building and the setting and are typically low-rise.
- Open space is the primary element of this Place Type. Depending on the purpose, the on-site open spaces typically include preserved natural areas, outdoor recreation facilities, or both. Examples of other open spaces include community or botanical gardens, arboreta, and landscaped areas.
- Community gathering space with small-scale commercial uses such as cafes along roadway
- Amenities interspersed throughout the public realm (benches, tables, trash receptacles, bike parking, etc.)
- Active space including sports fields/courts, play area, and community garden
- Safe multi-use paths, accommodating a lot of people and activation
- Transition to Adjacent Place Types
Bird’s Eye Highlights
- Increased tree canopy in open/passive spaces
- Frequent paths and connections (including to regional trails/greenways)
- Active space including sports fields/courts, play area, plaza, and community garden
- A mix of passive and active spaces
- New buildings in/along park including small low-intensity commercial node (eg. cafes) and civic buildings (eg. library, nature center, etc.)
- Buildings typically include recreation facilities, nature centers, restrooms, shelters, maintenance buildings, and small shops such as concession stands. Sizes vary depending on the purpose of the building and the setting, but are typically only a few stories.
- Preserves provide a natural setting and may include a variety of ways to interact with it, including paths, trails, and recreation opportunities.
- Parks include a variety of activities and facilities for active uses such as sports fields/courts, plazas, play areas, and gardens.
- Parks and Preserves should all provide easy access and clear paths of travel.